Abdul is a teacher turned YouTuber, who uploaded his first video on YouTube with the hope that his college friends would refer to the video in case of doubts, and since then he’s single-handedly uploaded 2000+ videos on topics ranging from Mathematics to Artificial Intelligence.
Today Abdul runs 4 YouTube Channels, and his venture Well Academy has helped many students to clear difficult examinations, find employment opportunities, and currently has 1000s of registered users actively learning from the Maestro himself.
So far Abdul has single-handedly created 2000+ videos and consistently uploads 2 videos every day. Today we learn Abdul’s story of transitioning from a teacher to a YouTuber, and online educator who’s making the world a better place by providing free, and quality education.
Abdul’s YouTube journey
- How did you get into YouTube? What is the story of your first video?
October 2016 – It was the time of our college exams, and being the man I am, my focus was to ensure my concepts are clear, and I would often be helping my friends learn concepts, and they would flock to my small house.
It became increasingly difficult to accommodate all the people in my little house. I thought why not automate this process, and I struck the idea of making videos of whatever I was teaching, and that’s how I put together a video on Youtube.
After about 15 videos, the very first video got 200 views, I was elated.
2. The story of your first 1000 subscribers?
The first set of videos I created was on “Maths-III”, perhaps one of the most challenging subjects in our college curriculum. With time, people from different colleges and universities started watching my content.
I hit the first 1000 subscribers in December 2016 – 3 months since I had launched my first video.
3. The journey to 10,000 subscribers on YouTube?
Well, I stopped making videos after my college exams got over, and I got busy with Gate preparations. Some of my friends demanded that I make more videos, as they had found the first set of videos very helpful, so I set out to make another set of videos on “Artificial Intelligence”.
In May 2017, about 5 months since I hit my first 1000 subscribers, we hit the 10,000 subscriber mark.
4. You are about to hit the Million subscriber mark on one of your channels, how do you feel about it?
Numbers are always encouraging, and a testament to your work, but something I will not lose sight of would-be putting in diligent work, and ensuring that my students get the best out of what we can offer.
Precisely why our team worked so hard to create a mobile app that allows our students to access all learning resources in one place. Numbers are important, yes! But not important enough that it governs our actions.
5. Story of a mistake that you made in your YouTube journey?
One of the things one should never try to do – “Changing your category” on YouTube, and in life. The initial traction that I had got for my work was based on the videos I had created for college subjects.
I later chose to start creating videos for GATE preparations, which was something that my audience wouldn’t really be interested in since they weren’t the desired audience for GATE lectures. It took me time to understand this, but I am glad I did. Now I know exactly what not to do!
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6. Why have you created different YouTube channels?
I currently have 4 YouTube channels. The 4 channels are directed towards different topics, and this makes it so much easy for me to manage my content, and the audience to relate to the work, and at the same time saves me from repeating my fatal mistake of changing my category.
- Talk with Abdul – 872K subscribers – 40.9 Million views
- Well Academy – 361K subscribers – 28.9 Million views
- Well Academy Plus – 52K subscribers – 2 Million views
- Well Academy: Govt exams, Current affairs – 12.9k Subs – 100,000 views
(Stats as per Jan 27, 2021)
In my experiences of amassing millions of views in my YouTube career, one should take care of the content they put, and stick to topics that are inter-related, rather than making extreme jumps, and switching categories.
Teaching Career of Abdul
7. When did you first sense that you are going to be a teacher?
When I was in grade 10th, my tuition teacher gave me the responsibility to take care of his classes, teach, and manage all other operations for 2 months until he returned from his religious trip from Saudi.
That was the first instance where I played the role of a teacher and looking back, I think this was the moment when I learned to “Believe in myself”.
The very fact that my teacher had trusted me with his students instilled a different kind of confidence in me, and perhaps that propelled me into the direction of teaching, and I’ve been doing this ever since.
8. A teacher plays a pivotal role in their students’ success. Did a teacher help you too?
“Shenila teacher”, she changed the course of my academic career for the better. As a child, I had been good at studies but sucked at Maths. I would barely get enough to pass, and with the board examinations nearing, I wanted to improve.
That’s when Shenila teacher comes into play. Instead of asking me to solve challenging problems, she would patiently help me solve maths sums. This act of deliberate practicing allowed me to re-work my older concepts, such as divisions, decimals, etc., and strengthen them.
I passed my boards with flying colors, and the highest marks I got were in Maths!
In fact, my teaching style is similar to what I experienced as a child – “My Focus is to help my students clear their concepts, and not get them to chase marks. As I believe Marks are always an outcome and not the end goal.”
9. What do you think is a practice teachers should follow to impact the lives of students effectively?
I think all teachers should encourage their students to “Ask questions”. I improved at Maths and other relatively weak areas only because my teachers were very empathetic and enabled me to ask questions.
In my classes at Well Academy, students can freely ask questions without the fear of being judged or made fun of, and something just so simple can truly change the course of how students perform.
10. Is Well Academy, and YouTube your first adventure with Entrepreneurship?
*Laughs* The GST rule was introduced in 2017, and businesses – small, and big were desperately looking for accounting solutions that could cater to their needs. This is when I saw an opportunity and pitched this idea to Mitesh sir(ex-boss), he was in, and now we were partners in a business. I would do the selling, and he and his team will build the software.
The idea was to build a GST compliant accounting software, and sell it to textile business owners(I had a fair amount of connections). I spent months talking to people out there on the streets – doing Market research, and selling software.
Months later when it was time for dividends to be paid, I made a mere Rs. 4000. This was after slogging myself for months. I felt bad for a while, but then this process taught me about the process of Market research, the art of selling, and a lot of other life skills that is now helping me build my Teaching career.
11. When did you know it was time to quit your job, and pursue teaching full-time?
After my stint with the GST software, and a 20-day experience as the Founder of a Fashion startup I learned that I should focus on what I do best – “Teach”.
I guess it’s super important to know “What not to do”, this gives you the clarity to pursue ahead in life without unnecessary distractions.
12. How does your family feel about your journey so far?
My family is extremely happy with how my career has shaped up so far, and I am grateful for their support. My pappa never stopped me from doing anything that I desired, and when I told them about my wish to get into teaching, and the world of content creation full-time, they were very supportive.
The fact that I had been teaching for a long-time, and had been faring decently further cemented their trust in me. I am grateful for their support, and I am happy to share that I have finally got us a house that we always dreamt of as a family.
13. You are very passionate about teaching. What are your next plans?
I am looking to add more people to my team and delegate all operational and administrative work such as Accounting, management, and other teaching-related logistical work. Delegating work would allow me to spend more and more time on Teaching. At the core of my heart, I am a teacher, and that’s the only thing I genuinely enjoy!
I am also working towards launching my own Publication House, which has been on my mind for about 2-3 years. This initiative intends to extend this as a mode of learning for all my students and soon offer full-stack educational services.
14. Tell us a little about the mobile app of Well Academy?
I realized it’s important that my students have access to all the resources they need at one place, and for that it was important that Well Academy have a website, and an app.
Since I come from a technical background, I created a quick wireframe of the app strcuture, and some of my friends wrote the app, and it was live in 6 months.
15. What advice would you give to someone who’s out there looking to take their craft full-time?
Focus on building and fostering relationships for that’s what matters in the longer run. The people I have met in my life so far have been one of they key reasons due to which I am doing what I am doing.
My teachers helped me clear my concepts, and that propelled me to love teaching. It was because of my friends that I started my YouTube channel. My ex-boss, Mitesh sir helped me launch Well Academy, and further advised me to optimize my server costs, and we are still in touch. Everything is about relationship building, and one can build good relationships only if they are true at their heart, and not looking for short-term gains out of a relationship.
We wish Abdul the very best for his mission to impact millions of students with his work in Education, and for his YouTube journey.
Editors Note –
The world needs more teachers like Abdul, and looking at his consistency, and love for teaching, I am positive that Abdul’s work will mark a dent in the world.
In my interactions with content creators, one thing that stood out for Abdul was his belief of completing a series that has been initiated, and continuing it till the very end irrespective of it getting the desired traction. As an aspiring content creator, this was one key takeaways for me from this interview.